Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is an action game for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 set after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. The protagonist of this fast-paced action game is Raiden however, formerly the main protagonist of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and a supporting character in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.
Originally, Hideo Kojima was supposed to produce the game, but unlike most other titles in the mainline Metal Gear series he would not take on the role of director. Kojima had initially said that this game would be created by some of his younger Metal Gear team staff. During production of this game, Kojima was busy writing and directing the PSP side story, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. It was announced on the Kojima Productions Report that the game will utilize a different engine than the one used in Guns of the Patriots.
After having trouble combining the traditional stealth gameplay of the MGS series with the new Raiden's swordplay, Kojima cancelled the project, but later revived it with Platinum Games as the main development studio. Platinum used their own engine to make it into a more action-oriented title, but Kojima's team at FOX Studios still held control over story and cutscene elements.
An interview with series creator Hideo Kojima confirmed that the game is considered a spin-off that is "not part of the Metal Gear Solid series", although it is considered part of the same universe, and thus "canon".
There are staples of gameplay from previous Metal Gear Solid titles, like the Soliton Radar and alert systems. Raiden can perform one-button stealth kills on some enemies from behind and from above if he has not been detected. Raiden even has access to a codec that can be used to communicate with his teammates for optional extra information and manually save his game.
However, most of the gameplay revolves around hack-and-slashing action, making use of two buttons that use Raiden's hands or feet to grip a powerful High-Frequency Sword that can cut through enemies and even some objects. Along with standard attacks is also use of a "Free Sword Mode" that lets the player control their slashes using the right stick and make their attacks more powerful, but limits range. Through cutting enemies in Free Sword Mode, the player can also gain Zandatsu ("cut and take" in Japanese) points which allows Raiden to refill his health and free sword meter by absorbing fluids from the spines of dead enemy cyborgs.
After each section, the player is graded on their performance including time taken, highest combo, and number of Zandatsu achieved.
Set four years after the events of Metal Gear Solid 4. The Sons of the Patriots (SOP) system has been destroyed by FOXALIVE, but the remnants of the paramilitary corporations (PMCs) still pose a threat to order in various hotspots around the globe. Private Military Security Companies (PMSC) have sprung up to help provide stability for VIPs around the world, and Raiden has joined one of them to help provide for his family while staying out of direct combat.
At the start of the game, Raiden is an employee of Maverick Security Consulting, Inc, a PMSC based in Colorado, USA. He is part of a Maverick team providing security for the new Prime Minister of a developing African nation, named N'Mani. However, cyborg assassins appear out of nowhere and attack the convoy. Raiden attempts to take them out, but N'Mani is kidnapped by them.
Raiden follows the attackers and tries to reach the Prime Minister in time, but he ends up getting into a fight with another cyborg ninja named Samuel Rodriguez, who takes out his left eye and leaves him for dead. Maverick manages to rescue Raiden from the site but N'Mani is killed, his last words begging Raiden to destroy Desperado.
With the help of Herr Doktor, Maverick builds a new armored suit for Raiden and dispatches him to Sukhimi, the capital of the Russian border territory of Abkhazia. Samuel's employer, Desperado Enforcement LLC, has been instrumental in overthrowing the legitimate government of Abkhazia, and Maverick has been hired to save what's left of the country's leaders. Raiden, however, seeks revenge on Samuel for the physical and emotional scars he left on his body.
Nevertheless, while in Abkhazia Raiden encounters and defeats Desperado's IF Prototype LQ-84i and proceeds to send what's left to Maverick for further study. Resulting in it's eventual repair and reprogramming, to serve as a ally of sorts whom now goes by the designation of Bladewolf. After defeating the leader of stationed Desperado forces, Mistral, her client, the Abkhazian liberation extremist Andrey Dolzaev, commits suicide by blowing up a power pylon with himself on it.
Raiden is then instructed by Maverick to head to Guadalajara alongside Bladewolf, to investigate a research facility with a potential Desperado tie. There he meets an orphan named George whose brain was going to be extracted alongside several other children for a nefarious purpose. The facility was inspected by Sundowner, an elite member of Desperado and Colorado State Senator Steven Armstrong whom has ties to the World Marshal PMC, an ally of Desperado's. It's revealed that the two PMCs plan to place the extracted orphan's brains into cybernetic bodies as a way to create a new breed of obedient slave soldiers.
Raiden proceeds to rescue George and the other orphans, and makes sure all get back to Maverick to stay out of harms way. Due to the fact that attacking World Marshall, a U.S. based PMC directly would be considered illegal and a crime. Raiden abruptly resigns from Maverick and tries to undergo a solo-corporate raid in Denver, massacring several DPD cops and Desperado soldiers in the process. Maverick still decides to aid Raiden, albeit unofficially.
Throughout his battles, Raiden becomes conflicted with his actions however and starts turning into his "Jack The Ripper" persona after encountering Samuel once again alongside his comrade Monsoon as the two are guarding World Marshall's Denver facility. Raiden unleashes his Jack the Ripper persona to kill Monsoon while Samuel leaves to report back to "the chief". When confronting Sundowner, however Raiden learns that Armstrong was using Desperado to hold off Raiden while he started Operation Tecumseh; through this terrorist act Armstrong attempts to murder the President of the United States while he is doing peace talks in Pakistan to ensure his ultimate goal of another War on Terror.
Unable to get any direct help from Maverick, Raiden intends to turn to a company by the name Solis to get to Pakistan in time to thwart the Senator's treasonous plot. Raiden is stopped however by Samuel in the Badlands and the two have their final duel. Following Raiden's victory he resumes to find help from an old friend and Solis's member Sunny Emmerich to reach the Pakistani air base. Raiden arrives in Pakistan and stops Armstrong who is piloting the new Metal Gear Excelsus.
Excelsus is then eventually destroyed by Raiden, yet Armstrong himself ends up being more of a challenge almost too much for Raiden to handle alone in single combat even. So before being abruptly defeated and killed by the Armstrong's raw nano-machine fueled strength, Bladewolf brings Raiden Samuel's sword which he uses to finally finish off Armstrong for good. With Armstrong's plan now thwarted and Desperado also in ruins, World Marshall is all that remains between Raiden and a resolution Raiden opts not to return to Maverick and to instead work alone, fighting his own personal war now. He is also seen in a more human form with a red left eye, hinting that Maverick managed to have his old human-like cyborg body rebuilt for him, and had his left eye fully replaced with a cybernetic one. Raiden then encounters four soldiers in an ambush at an undisclosed place, only to smirk as he unveils a stealth-equipped weapons case.
Maverick Security Consulting, Inc.
- Raiden -- The main character of the story. A former child soldier from Liberia who was nicknamed "White Devil" and "Jack the Ripper" for his actions on the battlefield, later involved in the incident involving Arsenal Gear, and somehow turned into a cyborg ninja between that incident and the Sons of the Patriots. Now he works providing security, training and consulting for VIPs as an employee of Maverick.
- Boris Vyacheslavovich Popov -- Russian security consultant who oversees the Maverick PMSC.
- Kevin Washington -- Former soldier who provides support for Raiden as a member of Maverick.
- Courtney Collins -- Communications specialist who also provides support for Raiden and Maverick. Saves game data.
- "Doktor" Wilhelm Voigt -- German scientist and brilliant researcher with fond memories of his home country before the Berlin Wall came down. Studies and develops cyborg technology and weapons. Saved Raiden's life by building a new cyborg body for him. Provides extra weaponry and equipment for Raiden in-game in exchange for the data found in the left arm of each cyborg soldier.
Desperado Enforcement, LLC and the "Winds of Destruction"
- Bladewolf -- IF Prototype LQ-84i K-9000, a dog-like robot with a small chainsaw attached to its tail. Bladewolf has an autonomous artificial intelligence that allows it to analyze the best way to carry out orders but is incapable of disobeying them. First encounters Raiden as a boss character in Abkhazia, later joins him after Raiden defeats the robot and Maverick reprograms it.
- "Jetstream" Samuel Rodriguez -- a cyborg swordsman who works for Desperado, who had his body and weapon modified specifically to be more lethal. He is responsible for cutting off Raiden's left eye and right arm before escaping, and later gets in Raiden's head by forcing him to confront the voices of the cyborgs he has to fight.
- Mistral -- A French-Algerian soldier and former Legionnaire who searched for a purpose to fight, and finally found one. Leads a cyborg detachment in Abkhazia for Dolzaev.
- Monsoon -- A cyborg whose head is the only "real" part of his body still remaining, while the rest of his body is a collection of segmented pieces held together by magnetic force.
- Sundowner -- A bulky cyborg who likes the "good" things that war brings.
- N'Mani -- Newly-elected Prime Minister of a developing African nation who seeks to lead his people on a more peaceful path. Ends up tortured and later killed by Desperado early on in the game to set an example. His last words include begging Raiden to avenge his death.
- Senator Armstrong -- Texas-born Senator from Colorado, potential Presidential candidate and a large sponsor of World Marshal PMC. Allied himself with Desperado for the sake of "Operation Tecumseh" to reignite the War on Terror, this time against Pakistan.
- Sunny Gurlukovich -- A little girl in the care of Hal "Otacon" Emmerich, struggling to adapt to life as a normal girl. Currently works for the Solis group.
The weapons in the game are separated into Main Weapons that can replace Raiden's HF Blade, and Unique Weapons that merely replace the Y/Triangle button attacks with the equipped weapon when activated. Unique Weapons can be bought in-game after defeating the bosses who wield them. Main weapons can be obtained in various ways. There are also "sub-weapons" that can be obtained from item boxes and drops.
- High-Frequency Blade ("HF Blade") -- Raiden's default weapon, a long, thin katana that uses vibrations to cut through tougher solid objects a normal blade cannot. This blade has stayed with him since MGS2 and 4. After the events of the prologue, Raiden gets a new one that performs the same functions, with a new sheath. Cost: 0BP
- High-Frequency Wooden Sword -- A wooden sword that can actually be downgraded in strength, used to make enemy cyborgs disappear "non-lethally." Find every Man in Box (MiB) to obtain this weapon. Cost: 5000 BP
- Stun Blade -- A hard weapon infused with an electric current containing 2 million volts of energy. This sword is capable of quickly stunning enemy cyborgs and UGs. Also contains a standard blade for finishing them off. Collect all scattered Data Storage devices in the game to unlock this weapon. Cost: 20000 BP
- Armor Breaker -- Modeled after the old "Kabutowari" swords from feudal Japan, a heavy sword that can quickly break through the armor of heavier enemies and allow for easier zandatsu. Collect all 30 special left arms to obtain this weapon.
- HF Machete -- A smaller, lighter blade modeled after a normal South American machete, the kind that standard cyborg soldiers carry. Not as strong as other weapons, but lets Raiden accomplish much faster combos. Collect 10 Data Storage devices to obtain this weapon. Cost: 5000 BP
- HF Longsword -- A large blade that gives Raiden greater range and power at the expense of attack speed. Complete all VR Missions with a first-place time to unlock.
- HF Murasama Blade -- A special blade called Maya wielded by Samuel Rodriguez, carried in a sheath that looks like the body of a gun. Raiden later gains this sword when fighting the final boss. Stronger than the standard HF blade. Cost: 10000 BP
- Snake Soul (DLC) -- A wooden sword that contains the voice of the legendary Solid Snake, which talks to Raiden while it's swung. Exclusive to the Japanese version.
- Fox Blade (DLC) -- The legendary Gray Fox's chokutō from Metal Gear Solid. Can be upgraded to cut through armor, which can kill all non-boss characters with few strikes. Cost: 200000 BP
Unique (Secondary) Weapons
- Pole-arm ("L'etranger") -- A large polearm composed of literal "arms" taken from multiple Dwarf Geckos combined together. Useful in clearing larger groups of enemies. Can be purchased in-game after defeating Mistral in File R-01. Cost: 10000 BP
- Tactical Sai ("Dystopia") -- A sai that uses magnetic force generated from the wielder's body to quickly close in on their target and dice them up. Paired with Raiden's standard blade, can be used to stun targets and yank them towards Raiden, or vice-versa. Can be purchased in-game after defeating Monsoon in File R-03. Cost: 10000 BP
- Pincer Blades ("Bloodlust") -- A large double-bladed sword formed from a pair of giant machetes. Capable of tearing through weaker enemies in one swing. Can be purchased in-game after defeating Sundowner in file R-04. Cost: 10000 BP
- Grenades -- Simple thrown explosives capable of damaging and/or stunning cyborgs and UGs.
- EM Grenades -- Can temporarily short-circuit and stun enemy cyborgs and UGs.
- Red Phosphorous Grenades -- Grenades that affect the vision of enemy cyborgs and UGs. Useful for stealth.
- Jam Grenades -- Grenades that produce a chaff cloud that affects enemy communications.
- Rocket Launcher -- A simple RPG with dummy explosives that fire in a straight line. Useful against armored foes.
- Homing Missile -- A surface-to-air missile launcher capable of tracking targets, mostly against airborne enemies but can lock on to ground targets too.
- Cardboard Box -- A medical supply box with foiled lining that obscures the IR vision of enemy units, which allows Raiden to sneak past them if he is not seen moving with the box.
- Oil Drum -- Similar to the cardboard box, somehow lined with a special metal that masks Raiden's IR signature. Like in MGS4, can be turned on its side, allowing the user to roll around.
- 3D Photo Frame -- A throwable item capable of distracting un-alerted enemy cyborgs who see it with a 3D holographic image of a sexy lady.
Raiden can reportedly unlock costumes and hairstyles that have different affects in game. Some of them are DLC.
- Custom Cyborg Ninja -- Raiden's default black armor after events in the game force Herr Doktor to transplant what's left of his original body into a new outfit. Cost: 0 BP
- Mariachi Uniform -- A pancho and sombrero draped over Raiden's default suit. Purchased by Raiden at a Mexican souvenir shop in a misguided attempt to blend in with the locals in Guadalajara. Can be purchased in-game after clearing File R-02. Cost: 20000 BP
- Desperado Cyborg Ninja -- Raiden's default armor, but with the colors of Desperado Enforcement, LLC. Can be obtained after clearing File R-04. Cost: 15000 BP
- Red Custom Cyborg Ninja -- Similar to the default body, but focuses on increased attack at the expense of defense. Can be obtained after completing 30% of VR Missions. Cost: 15000 BP
- Blue Custom Cyborg Ninja -- Similar to the default body, but focuses on increased defense at the expense of attack power. Can be obtained after completing 50% of VR Missions. Cost: 15000 BP
- Yellow Custom Cyborg Ninja -- Increases defense, slows rate of Blade Mode depletion and increases electrolyte resupply rate. Can be obtained after completing 100% of VR Missions.
- Standard Body -- Raiden's original cyborg suit during the prologue. Finish the game on Hard difficulty to unlock. Cost: 15000 BP
- Suited Raiden -- Raiden in a business suit like the one he wears in the prologue cutscene. Finish File R-00 on Very Hard difficulty to unlock. 20000 BP
- White Battle Armor (DLC) -- Allows Raiden to carry more health items.
- Inferno Red Armor (DLC) -- Raises Raiden's grenade-carrying capacity by five.
- Commando Suit Armor (DLC) -- Lets Raiden carry more missiles.
- Original Cyborg Ninja (DLC) -- Grey Fox's original armor from Metal Gear Solid. Also comes with his "Fox Blade." Cost: 20000 BP
- Metal Gear Solid 4 Armor (DLC) -- Raiden's look from MGS 4.
- Infinite Wig A -- Infinite sub-weapon ammo, finish the story campaign on Normal or higher and collect 10 special left arms to unlock. Cost: 50000 BP
- Infinite Wig B -- Infinite Blade Mode, finish story campaign on Normal or higher and collect 20 special left arms to unlock.
- Blade Mode Wig -- Blade Mode will cut through armored enemies instantly. Finish story mode on Hard or higher and collect 30 special left arms to unlock.
- VR Missions DLC - A pack of 30 new VR Missions with various gameplay styles including hand-to-hand combat as Raiden and stealth missions as a Dwarf Gekko. In Japan this pack also includes a wooden sword infused with the soul of Solid Snake, speaking in his voice whenever it's swung. Exclusive to the PlayStation 3 in America, but available on both consoles in other territories.
- Jetstream - A new story mode chapter where players take control of "Jetstream" Samuel Rodrigues, fleshing out the character's backstory before he came to work for Desperado. Sam differs from Raiden in his focus on charge attacks, as well as a new taunt mechanic that makes enemies stronger and more aggressive but at the cost of their defense.
- Bladewolf - A new story mode chapter where players take control of LQ-84i, set during the coup of Abkhazia. Blade Wolf's story focuses on stealth, adding a score for the number of hunt kills a player performs and a bonus for getting through a ranked fight without triggering an alert. Bladewolf's story also adds a brand new boss fight complete with a vocal theme that appears exclusively in the DLC.
Metal Gear Solid: Rising was first hinted at during Hideo Kojima's debut 2009 Game Developers Conference appearance in San Francisco and specifically while delivering his keynote presentation. It detailed the long development process of the Metal Gear franchise all the way up to Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots and ended with his concluding remarks which were geared towards the future of the series. A floating mock-up spelling-out "The Next MGS", prominently featured a Raiden-esque cyborg character alluding to the series new direction.
Metal Gear Solid: Rising was then officially announced at Microsoft's E3 '09 press conference. A teaser trailer was released by series' director Hideo Kojima, although Kojima was supposed to only serve as the executive producer for the game. Rising was initially only announced for the Xbox 360 but was later confirmed for the PlayStation 3 as well as the Games for Windows Live platform.
After a year long silence, Metal Gear Solid: Rising was once again shown at Microsoft's press conference. Hideo Kojima came on stage and then "passed the torch" to Rising's producer, Shigenbu Matsuyama. He then explained that the game is based on "Zan-Datsu". In Japanese, "Zan" (斬) means "to cut" and "Datsu" (奪) means "to take by force". Then a trailer was shown. The first part of the trailer showed Raiden infiltrating an enemy base and cutting a rather beefy cybernetic enemy to shreds, apparently absorbing energy of some kind from a dismembered segment of one of the robot's two spines. Then the trailer showed actual gameplay footage, in which the player takes control of Raiden and fights through a village similar to the one found in chapter two of Metal Gear Solid 4. The gameplay from the trailer suggests that Rising is far more focused on action, combat, and melee than the previous Metal Gear Solid games. Also, from the trailer, it looks like the player will be able to control how Raiden uses his sword in different ways, ranging from gorily and efficiently dismembering his opponents to benignly chopping a watermelon (a reference to the famous scene from MGS4 in which a Gekko confuses a box full of watermelons for Old Snake) into handy slices.
Platinum Games Takes Over
In spite of numerous plot ideas and a variety of scenarios thought out for the game, Kojima Productions was still finding it extremely difficult to design a game mostly around the inherent concept of cutting things. The project was silently cancelled in late 2010 due to lack of foreword momentum and whilst Kojima had considered moving the project to developers abroad, mainly of a Western nature he felt that a Japanese developer would still be more suited to produce a sword focused, ninja action game. In early 2011, Kojima chose to approach Tatsuya Minami, president & CEO of Platinum Games about reviving the cancelled project with them. Platinum Games accepted the challenge and took over development with Atsushi Inaba as producer, reworking the game from the bottom up using their own engine, whilst Kojima Productions handling cutscenes and story elements, revising the story to now take place after Metal Gear Solid 4 to reflect the new development style. This new revision, now given the title Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, was first revealed via a trailer initially intended to exclusively premiere on the Spike Video Game Awards on December 10, 2011 though it was leaked online hours before its scheduled appearance.
The VGA reveal trailer has also revealed that Raiden will once again be voiced by Quinton Flynn, who had been previously quoted, saying Konami had yet to contact him regarding the game. The game's title was changed to Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance to reflect that it isn't part of the main Metal Gear Solid series, but is instead a spin-off that takes place after Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. Kojima also confirmed Rising will run at sixty frames per second, a requirement he personally requested to Platinum Games during the initial talks of their involvement.
A January issue of the Japanese gaming publication Famitsu, wrote that Rising would be playable at the 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo.
This particular issue of Famitsu also featured a conversation between Kojima and Platinum Games' CEO Tatsuya Minami and producer Atsushi Inaba. The three again reflected on how Platinum came to be involved in the Rising project.
Minami recalled that when the offer first came through he thought it was a joke. In response to his Kojima said: "Even though we were serious, we didn't get a response, so we asked a second time one year later." When they finally spoke out about the collaboration, Kojima said it all started during Sony's Vita announcement press conference.
The subject then quickly shifted to Rising's previous iteration, and it's divisive stealth component being the first thing Platinum tossed out from the game when taking over the project, revealed by Minami. Kojima then admitted that his staff felt that stealth and high speed action did not go well with one another, and that he personally did not want a stealth component in the game either. Nevertheless, reminding everyone-else once again that he has no direct involvement in development whatsoever.
- Original Cyborg Ninja (DLC), and Artbook-GameStop(U.S.)
- Red Inferno Armor (DLC), allows Raiden to carry extra grenades -Amazon(U.S.)
- White Battle Armor (DLC), allows Raiden to carry extra healing items -Best Buy(U.S.)
- Exclusive Instrumental Soundtrack -Walmart(U.S.)
- Commando Armor (DLC), allows Raiden to carry more missiles -(EU)(JP)
- Set of Five Limited-Edition Metal Gear Rising trading cards -(JP Pre-Order Bonus)
As well as the standard edition there are two additional versions available: The "limited edition" ( U.S. Version) (EU Version) and the "Premium Package"/ "Premium Package Konami Style Special Edition" (JP Versions). The (EU version) in particular will also come with the same White Armored Raiden action figure by Play Arts that is bundled with the (Japanese version), as well as a code to unlock the White Battle Armor in the game, an armor that allows players to carry more recovery items.
The Premium Package & (Konami Style SKU) contain much more then the Limited Edition, but all editions will include one or more of the following:
- Raiden figure (EU Limited Edition) (JP Konami SKU)
- Art Book (JP Premium Packages) (EU Pre-Order Bonus) (U.S. Pre-Order Bonus)
- Official Soundtrack (JP Premium Packages) (U.S. Limited Edition)
- Cyborg Ninja DLC (JP Premium Packages) ( All EU Copies) (U.S. Pre-Order Bonus)
- 2 Dwarf Gekko magnet figures (JP Premium Package)
- Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance - Steelbook (U.S. Limited Edition) (EU Pre-Order Bonus) (JP Premium Packages)
- High Frequency Plasma Lamp (U.S. Limited Edition)